Powerlessness and Awareness

I find it hard to write these days.  There is so much unrest in the world and to be quite honest, unrest is not my jam.  I prefer to focus on kindness, compassion and gratitude with a lighthearted bent and a sense of humor.  The subjects I write about have depth but my silly prose can misconstrue them as light and fluffy. But you can’t paint light and fluffy on human suffering.

The Problem

What do you write about when you feel your contribution of lightheartedness is not the appropriate offering?  How do you be you and not minimize the suffering of others?  How do you speak up when you know it’s not your voice that should be heard?

My Little Brush with Racism

I know a little of racism…very little.  My interaction with racism involves a family history of Japanese internment camps, being present for some unpleasant ethnic jokes and having someone ask “What is she?” (meaning my ethnic background) like I’m a pedigree of dog. At the start of COVID, my daughter was the source of consternation when a mother cautioned her child to stay away from “that Chinese girl.”  Minor small-minded irritations and generational silence.  Not centuries of oppression and cruelty, not needing to fear for my life in my own neighborhood from those who are employed to protect life and not trying to exist in a system designed to keep me down.

Ineffective is what I have felt. 

Small Things

I’ve decided to do the only thing I know right now.  I’m acknowledging my powerlessness and leaning towards awareness. This is not my march to lead.  I can only offer myself to those who have been marginalized to serve in whatever guise required. To the black community, I say: If you need my solidarity, you have it. If you need me to educate myself, I am doing it.  If you need to shout your story, I will listen.  If you need me to recognize my own racial bias, I will continue to strive to do better.

The biggest things\ that has come out of all this for me is my sheer ignorance.  I have work do. Being respectful of human life and trying to be a good person has never been enough. Time to put on the big girl pants and stop shying away from hard subjects.

What Matters

I think it’s okay to feel powerless and ineffective for a time.  When I feel powerless and ineffective, the next step is to find ways to regain my power and be effective. There are some great resources out there on anti-racism, and it makes me feel heartened to see I’m one in a very long list of people on the list for many of these books at our local library.

And I will continue to spread my message of acceptance, kindness, compassion and gratitude because that is necessary too…just not today. 

#BlackLivesMatter

Resources:

The Next Question

Anti-Racism Books compiled by Ideal Bookshop

Brene Brown Unlocking Us Podcasts – Austin Channing Brown and Ibram X. Kendi

Explaining #BlackLivesMatter

Outed

In an attempt to expand my social media awareness, I decided to dabble in Instagram last week.  This social media outlet has appealed to me since I obtained a new phone.  I love snapping pics of things that interest me and even participated in a 31-day photo prompt called Picture Home by Tracey Clark just for creative fun which I highly recommend.

Unfortunately, my knowledge base when it comes to social media is at a grade 3 level.  I know enough to be dangerous…not world domination dangerous, but kind of like a Mentos/Diet Coke experiment gone sideways.

The gist of it all is that after protecting my identity on every other social media site…Instagram outed my blog.

Photo by Jens Johnsson on Unsplash

My Instagram Outing

My first inkling is when friends started following me on Instagram and then acquaintances.  Now, I love and appreciate that they have joined my Instagram, and we are talking a hugely supportive group of people who I absolutely adore.  However (you knew there was a “but”…however is a fancier “but”), it made me feel a huge dose of imposter syndrome. 

Now, this is all about me and my insecurities, not about the people who follow me.  I happily have added any friends or family who have asked to be linked to my blog, but the key is they asked. I did not forcibly tie them to the chair and show them baby pictures of my kids or my Facebook feed of my trip to the dry cleaners.  It was their choice.

My Vulnerabilities

The first issue I had was with my financial writing.  Now, I love all things financial.  I love listening to podcasts, reading books and talking about it.  Funny how something so completely personal can feel so great to talk with strangers about, but when it comes to my social circle…not so much.  I think it is because I know intimately where some of them are with their money…some good…some not so good, and I don’t want them to ever feel shame in their financial journeys, as I refuse to feel shame ever again in mine.

The second issue I had was with the clear written evidence of my kooky brain.  Now, I know in the wide world of billions of people that there are many other people who see the world with my half full, fairies in the grass, rose colored wine glasses viewpoint.  My supportive spouse also is fully aware what he got himself into (too late…you put a ring on it), but many people get a bit more of a diluted version…a bit, but in my blog, I’m free to release as much of myself as I wish.

Accepting What Is

As you know, this blog is called Accepting Jane, so you can see where this is going to go…it’s like seeing the movie Titanic.  You know how it’s going to end and spend the movie lamenting the lack of safety equipment.  In a similar fashion, you may have been watching my emotional process and just want to scroll to the bottom where I figure it out.

I’ve decided to accept this unexpected outcome and to continue my writing unaltered with one big omission…I will no longer write my Financial Fridays.  I think that’s okay with most of you because my stats seem to say that you have more interest in my kooky viewpoint than my money…except for those great international investment opportunity e-mails I have been getting.  This is a slight relief because I had been wanting to streamline my blog, and Instagram has helped me with the process.

I will also continue uncensored to reveal my kooky thought processes…after all, I’m in my 40s. I just don’t have the energy to present an inauthentic version of myself. The padded bras and colored contacts went out a long time ago.

Lessons I Have Learned

  1. If you want to be outed, join Instagram…Look for me at acceptingjane
  2. Sometimes unexpected things happen, process it, feel your lows, and when you are ready, move in the direction of a higher vibe. While I don’t subscribe to the everything happens for a reason camp of thinking, I am a card-carrying member of thank goodness I have no control over the path of my life or I would be an insufferable, self-centered human.
  3. It’s fun to talk to strangers about your money, but delete international investment opportunities.
  4. Marry someone who appreciates your kooky brain.

To all my new peeps, thank you for being so supportive, interested in me and amazingly you. After I dig past my imposter syndrome, I am delighted you are here.

Buckle up.

Here’s my trip to the dry cleaners.
Photo by Waldemar Brandt on Unsplash